Racing and Wagering Western Australia (RWWA) has today announced it will provide $168.4 million in funding to the State’s racing industry for 2020, representing a 6.9% increase over the 2019 financial year.
The $10.6 million increase in funding will support key focus areas identified as fundamental to the improvement of Western Australian racing, with industry sustainability and relevance at the forefront.
Thoroughbred trainers and owners are set to be major beneficiaries with a $3.8 million increase in prizemoney across midweek metropolitan and inner provincial race meetings, as well as a further $1.1M allocated to the Westspeed Scheme to meet the increased frequency of Westspeed Platinum winners within the last 12-months.
“A vast majority of thoroughbred’s race at mid-week metropolitan or inner provincial class race meetings, for most of their careers,” said RWWA CEO, Richard Burt.
“By increasing prizemoney for these races, it distributes more prizemoney to an increased number of owners and trainers, and provides them importantly with a more sustainable return.”
RWWA is also focused on revitalising the relevance of the thoroughbred code, by dedicating $1.75 million in funding towards marketing and digital content strategies focused on ownership, post-racing equine welfare, and the newly created thoroughbred brand The Races WA.
A major announcement for greyhound racing will see RWWA commit to the introduction of seven day racing, along with targeted prizemoney increases to 490m+ and City Class races to enhance returns to industry participants.
RWWA’s priority for the harness code is the implementation of the New Business Model to improve the commercial competitiveness and generate greater wagering returns that can then be reinvested back to industry via distribution.
As announced previously in December 2018, RWWA has also approved in principle, subject to business cases, $23 million in funding for new thoroughbred racing infrastructure, including the re-development of the Bunbury racecourse to provide an engineered year-round turf racing surface as well as the construction of a second turn at the Pinjarra racecourse, with both projects to commence within FY20. A further, $600,000 will be made available for essential racing infrastructure grants across all three codes.
“Traditional distribution areas including stakes funding, breeding schemes, rider and driver payments, event fees and subsidies benefiting clubs will continue to be supported,” said Mr Burt.
“RWWA is committed to providing distribution that will continue to deliver a quality racing product to increase wagering turnover and raceday attendance to generate revenue streams for our industry, resulting in sustainable returns to our owners to maintain and grow their investment in the Western Australian racing industry.”
The State’s racing industry is funded via the profits made by the Western Australia TAB together with income generated via the Western Australia race bets levy paid by national wagering operators and part proceeds from the point of consumption wagering tax.
New funding areas for FY20:
- $3.81M: prizemoney increases to midweek metropolitan and inner provincial race meetings
- $1.1M: increase in Westspeed to meet the increased frequency of Westspeed Platinum winners within the last 12-months
- $350K: increase in jockey race ride and trial fees
- $54K: upgrading of Broome Turf Club’s vision service to be consistent with all SKY thoroughbred venues
- $1.75M: ownership, marketing and digital content strategies
- $715K: commitment to introduction of seven day per week racing – club funding
- $528K: additional prizemoney for 490m+ and City Class races
- $375K: increase in trainers subsidy for 490m+ races
- $228K: WestChase stimulus package
- $225K: prizemoney for hosting of the 2019 National Championships at Cannington
- $97K: full implementation of retired greyhound sterilisation and dental subsidy
- $95K: increase in feature prizemoney levels and upgrading feature races
- $54K: increase towards the full implementation of the Track Injury Rebate Scheme
- $309K: increase to deliver full-year effect of the New Business Model
- $430K: an additional 43 feature races for 4YO+ Westbreds to extend the earning opportunity for owners of Westbred horses